Unemployment still high in the north

21/02/2006 14:00

The rate of unemployment remained at about the same level in most provinces of the Netherlands in 2005. Groningen is still the province with the highest unemployment, Utrecht still has the lowest rates. Unemployment increased in the four large cities, while it fell slightly in the rest of the country. Just as in previous years, Rotterdam was the city with the highest unemployment, although the rates in Amsterdam approached those in Rotterdam in 2005.

Slight fall in Utrecht and North Brabant

In most provinces, unemployment was around the same level in 2005 as in 2004. It fell slightly in Utrecht and North Brabant and rose slightly in Zeeland. The province of Groningen has had the highest rate of unemployment for years now. In 2005 nearly 10 percent of the labour force in Groningen was unemployed. In Drenthe and Flevoland too, unemployment was relatively high. Unemployment was lowest in the province of Utrecht, while in North Brabant, Gelderland and Zeeland the rates were also below the national average.

Unemployment by province

Unemployment did rise in four large cities

The national rate of unemployment rose in the period 2001-2004. The increase came to an end from 2004 to 2005, only continuing to rise in the large cities. In the rest of the country it fell slightly last year. In 2005, 9 percent of the labour force in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht were unemployed. In 2004 this was still  only 8 percent. The increase in unemployment in the four large cities affected mainly people with a non-western foreign background. Unemployment among the native Dutch population hardly rose.

Unemployment in the Netherlands and in the large cities

Unemployment highest in Rotterdam

Just as in previous years, Rotterdam had the highest rate of unemployment of the four large cities. Nearly 11 percent of the labour force in Rotterdam were out of a job in 2005. With a rate of 10 percent, Amsterdam came near to the Rotterdam rate for the first time. Unemployment in these two cities is one and a half times as high as the national average. In The Hague and Utrecht unemployment was a little lower in 2005, but still higher than the national average.

Unemployment in the Netherlands and the four largest cities

Ingrid Beckers